November 9, 2012 The Pump Handle 19Comment

It took six years of going from doctor to doctor to doctor for Penney Cowan to finally receive a diagnosis for her chronic pain: fibromyalgia. Doctors had told her she’d just have to learn to live with the pain — a condition that some days made it hard to lift a cup of coffee. So when she decided to join the pain program at Ohio’s Cleveland Clinic, she didn’t have high hopes. She says she expected the effort to fail.

October 9, 2012 The Pump Handle 6Comment

Between 1940 and 1971, a synthetic form of estrogen called diethylstilbestrol (DES) was prescribed to pregnant women to prevent miscarriage and premature labor. This practice changed abruptly, though, after the New England Journal of Medicine published a dramatic new finding from a study of young women diagnosed with a rare cancer in two Boston hospitals.

August 17, 2012 The Pump Handle 2Comment

For years, Peter Rosenfeld was looking for an effective way to treat what doctors had diagnosed as severe and intractable migraines. He’d heard of medical marijuana, but thought it was a joke — that it was just a way for people to justify their marijuana use. Today, he’s a passionate advocate for medicinal marijuana and one of many advocates disappointed at recent federal actions.

April 9, 2012 Liz Borkowski, MPH 1Comment

In the New York Times last week, Gardiner Harris reported on tensions between FDA and the White House over FDA decisions that White House officials fear will be politically problematic for President Obama. Harris reminds readers that “The Bush administration repeatedly stopped the agency from issuing rules to prevent contamination of eggs, produce and other […]

January 11, 2012 Celeste Monforton, DrPH, MPH 1Comment

Washington State becomes the first in the nation to adopt specific workplace safety rules to protect healthcare workers who are potentially exposed to anti-neoplastic drugs and other hazardous medications. The new rule, issued earlier this month by the State’s Department of Labor & Industries, stems from legislation passed in April 2011 and signed into law […]

September 17, 2010 Liz Borkowski, MPH 3Comment

Earlier this week, FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg presented Frances Kelsey with the first in what will be a series of awards bearing Kelsey’s name. Fifty years ago, as a new medical officer with the FDA, Kelsey refused to approve US sale of Kevadon, a drug widely recognized by its generic name, thalidomide. The drug was […]